Saturday, 13 September 2014

The Balm | Mary Lou Manizer

It was the Jemma Kidd All Over Radiance Cream in Iced Gold that truly sparked my obsession with highlighters. Since that has sadly been discontinued I have been on the hunt to find something equally as good. I do have my favourite cream highlighter the No.7 Instant Radiance which I have reviewed here, but there are days where I'm not in the mood for cream products and just want the convenience of a powder. I had heard rave reviews on many of The Balm's products - in particular the Mary-Lou Manizer so I eventually gave in as I always do and ordered it. I ordered from Cloud 10 Beauty and as always the parcel arrived beautifully packaged and really quickly. Of course as soon as it arrived I had it on my cheek bones within minutes, and a couple of minutes after that I had an Instagram picture up of it asking where it had been all my life. This highlighter is absolutely amazing. I have used it everyday since getting it and have gotten so many compliments and questions on what I'm wearing. 

First off the packaging - it is cute, compact and sturdy. Everything we could ever want. You get so much product for your money - 8.5g to be exact- and since you need only the tiniest amount I can imagine this will last for a very long time. It also comes with a mirror in the compact which is always an nice addition. The powder itself is just so ridiculously pigmented. The smallest touch of a brush will do both my cheeks and down the centre of my nose. It is a champagne coloured highlighter which are my favourite shade for my skin-tone as I think it is the most flattering and natural looking. The effect this highlighter gives to the tops of my cheekbones is just out of this world. It gives such a natural looking radiance to the skin without the slightest hint of glitter. As I said before you really do need the tiniest amount of this product to get the desired effect. It is really easy to get a little too "brush happy" with this one so go in light-handed ladies! 

If you love your highlighters you NEED this beauty in your life! You won't regret it promise. It's available online here from Cloud10Beauty. Let me know if you have tried this highlighter and what your thoughts are! Also let me know what your all time favourite highlighter is!

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Sick Day Essentials

So you might have heard that this week I am abit under the weather. (Its not like I've mentioned it on twitter a million times, worst patient ever!) I haven't been feeling right for about a week now. But since I still have to go about my normal day and am still expected to look human I decided to share with you the products I have been reaching for this past week to try and help me look that I am still functioning - even though underneath I am a pale, shivering mess.

YSL | Le Teint Touche Eclat Foundation
I have been trying to give my skin as much glow and moisture as possible because it is definitely looking a little worse for wear. So of course I have been reaching for the foundation with the serious "glow-factor". I love this foundation because it gives you such a natural, healthy looking glow which is exactly what my poor skin needs at the moment. It doesn't feel heavy on my skin as the day goes on and it is relatively long lasting (although after blowing your nose a couple of times you might need to top up to avoid looking like Rudolf!)

The Balm | Mary Lou Manizer
Following on from the glow-giving foundation, I have been piling on the highlighter. The one I have been loving this past week is the Mary Lou Manizer from The Balm. Now I have heard so so many reviews and ravings about this highlighter and I just never believed the hype. I ordered it on a bit of  a whim last week and have been using it solid since it arrived. It is safe to say the hype is definitely true. Where has this been all my life?! It is the most amazingly pigmented highlighter I have ever used. It is not glittery and just gives your skin a very "Hollywood Glow" look without looking like you dipped your head in grease!

Rimmel Scandaleyes Eyeliner | Nude
This eyeliner is the most well-loved in my collection. When I am sick my contacts feel so uncomfortable and my eyes always tend to go red and puffy. So during the day when it is socially unacceptable to go around with pieces of cucumber on my eyes I have been carrying around my nude eyeliner instead. It is perfect for cancelling out any redness and giving you a wide-eyed, well rested look that you may not have achieved by sleep.

NUXE | Reve de Miel Lipbalm
Finally to keep the chapped lips at bay I have my tub of Reve de Miel with me. This is the lipbalm that puts all others to shame. It gives my lips such amazing moisture that I have never gotten from anything else. It is a seriously heavy-duty lipbalm. It has a matte finish which is unusual for a lipbalm but it feels lovely and velvety on the lips and stays on for ages!

So those are my "sick day" products, along with plenty of Kleenex and paracetamol! Let me know what products you would use if you are feeling a little under the weather! (PS the tissues in the pictures are not used, promise!)

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Soap & Glory | Massage Glove for Cleaning Brushes?

Don't judge me yet, let me explain! I'm sure you've all seen that brush cleansing glove from Sigma, it looks like it makes brush cleaning a breeze but the price really put me off and I just couldn't justify it! So when I seen this on the shelves of Boots I whipped it up hoping it would be a good dupe. 

It's not identical to the Sigma one in the way that the Sigma glove has all these different fancy grooves for different brushes and this one is the same all over. But to be honest that didn't really matter to me, I just wanted to see if it would make deep cleaning my brushes any easier. So when I got home I gathered my Johnson Baby Shampoo and my brushes together (lets just say it was definitely time for a deep clean!) and set off on my cleaning mission. I popped a little bit of baby shampoo onto the centre of the glove and just started to swirl the brush in. I had the tap on as I was doing this so I could dampen the brush as I went and to get rid of any excess shampoo that was getting in my way. 

This glove is absolutely amazing. I found such a difference in my brushes compared to just hand washing them. It really got down to the nitty gritty bits in the middle that you might not get otherwise. The little grooves really help to get right down to the bottom of the bristles to make sure every last piece of dirt has been lifted. Even though it is obviously a little rougher than just using your hand I haven't experienced any shedding or anything like that so I believe it is still gentle enough to use on your brushes.

It is available online here for €11. I think if you have had your eye on the Sigma one definitely give this a go first! 

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Going Bare-Faced?

If you follow me on twitter you will know I recently went a week without makeup. I had a family wedding coming up and I wanted my skin to look good for it. So since I was on holidays from work for the week leading up to the wedding I decided to go cold turkey on the makeup front and didn’t put anything near my face for the five days before the wedding.

 You might be thinking that this is a different blog post coming from me, considering I usually just stick to the beauty reviews and it is but I just wanted to share my experiences with you. Now as you may have gathered from reading my blog I do tend to wear make up on a daily basis. Even if it’s just a little bit of CC cream and mascara, I just feel that little bit more confident with it and above all I just really enjoy applying it and it is part of my daily routine. So to go from that to a bare face was a big step for me. Granted it was a little easier because I didn’t have to go into work but I was still out and about on an everyday basis running errands before the wedding so I still seen people I knew. Going out for the first few days was more daunting than I was expecting. I was almost apologising to people I met out that I knew for my appearance when most of those people probably didn’t care or even notice. Once I got over those couple of days I started to forget that I didn’t have make up on and just went about my day as normal. Plus having the option to rub your eyes in the middle of the day is just a glorious feeling! 

During the week I got so many breakouts which was just typical since I couldn’t put a bit of concealer on to cover it up. I started to do a mini facial every second evening to help draw out all of the impurities that were lurking beneath the surface. During the last couple of days I found such an improvement in my skin. All of the red nasty breakouts had gone down, blackheads were reduced and I found that my skin overall had evened out and just looked a lot brighter and healthier. So the break from make up really did do it the world of good. On the day of the wedding when I finally put on makeup, it glided on and sat perfectly on my skin for the day. I was so happy the way it looked on the day that it really did make it all worthwhile.

I’m sure there are plenty of people reading this and thinking it’s no big deal to go without makeup and there are people that never wear make up but there are also people who wouldn’t dare step outside without their “face” on and before that week I would have considered myself to be in the second category. Since doing my “make-up free week” I have gotten more confidence in my own skin and not caring so much if my face is not perfect because lets be fair who’s is? I feel like I could go out without make up and I really wouldn’t care who I met on my travels where a couple of months ago I wouldn’t have gone out for fear of who I’d see and if they wouldn’t recognize me without makeup (mad I know!)

So as ridiculous as it may sound to some people, I am really proud of myself for going without make up for the week. My skin has really thanked me for it and now I feel less pressure on myself to have make up on everyday. I’d love to hear your opinion on this topic, what are your thoughts on going make up free?

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

August Beauty Favourites

I know I say this every month, but seriously how fast did the past month go? I have tried a lot of new products this month and done a lot of shopping, but I did manage to whittle down my picks to 5 products. Keeping it short and sweet this month! 

Urban Decay De-Slick Setting Spray
I have previously tried the All Nighter spray and was so impressed with it I repurchased both that and the De-Slick spray. I purchased the De-Slick for my cousins wedding this month as I hoped it would help reduce shine and prolong my makeup of course. I used a couple of sprays over my makeup on the morning of the wedding and my makeup lasted all day and night until I removed it myself. I did find the spray helped reduce excess shine without making my skin feel tight or dry. If you have overly oily skin I would recommend you give this ago!

NARS Deep Throat
I fell in love with this blush when I got the One Night Stand palette, so much so that I bought it in a single pan. I have worn it almost everyday this month. Deep Throat is a coral, pink with a touch of golden shimmer running through it. It is the most perfect Summer-time blusher, with a tan it looks amazing! It has definitely got a cult status for a reason and has fast become a holy grail blush of mine!

Chanel Chance Perfume
My mum gave me this perfume towards the start of the month and I have been using it more liberally than I would have liked. It is a very citrus-y scent and so light. It is very light and refreshing and one of the most perfect scents for the Summer (can you sense a theme in these favourites?) Plus everyone needs a bit of Chanel in their lives!

Nars Sheer Glow Foundation
I have already proclaimed my love for this foundation many times but I thought once more wouldn't hurt. This month I repurchased a bottle of my regular shade Monte Blanc and I bought a new shade Fiji which is darker so it would suit my skin better when I am tanned. I wore this for the wedding this month and I was so happy with how my skin looked in the pictures. It looked really natural and there was no flashback in any pictures.

 Smashbox Full Exposure Palette 
Now this is a bit of a cheat because I only bought it the last week in August but I have used it everyday since. The top row are all shimmery shades and the bottom are all matte. There is every colour in it for both day and night time looks. The shadows are all amazing quality, really pigmented, buttery and blend so easily. If you would like to see a full review on this please let me know!

So those are my top picks for the past month, all very Summery picks and I am really excited about the colder months arriving and the darker colours trickling into my makeup. 

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Essie Ballet Slippers – The perfect nude?

I was recently digging through my nail polish collection (over 150 in case you were wondering. I have problems!) and came across this beauty that I had actually forgotten about. I bought Essie Ballet Slippers months and months ago and while I wore it at the time I don’t think I properly appreciated its beauty until I wore it the other day.

Granted it is a bit of a biotch to work with- three layers to get the desired effect! But once you get there it is beautiful. It is the perfect nude pink with a little bit more opacity than a regular French manicure pink but not to the extent of Essie Fiji.

If you are in the market for a sheer pink nail polish I would definitely recommend Ballet Slippers from Essie…just look how pretty!

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Dream Dots | Spot Treatment

I was so excited to get my hands on the Dream Dots* and unfortunately my skin being the way it is, I was able to try them out instantly. Recently I have been getting alot of under the skin spots, you know the ones that are really painful and really red but never come to a head properly so you don't even get the satisfaction of giving it a good squeeze. (TMI,.I'm sorry!) So when these landed on my doorstep it really could not have been better timing as I have a wedding coming up and I wanted my skin to look good for it. So as well as taking the last couple of days make-up free I thought I would give these a good road test and see how they actually work.

Basically what the Dream Dots are, are tiny little gel patches that you put directly on your spot. The little patches themselves are so amazingly thin you wouldn't know you had anything on. I actually wore these out one day and nobody noticed! If anything they helped disguise the redness that was around the spot underneath which is such a bonus! You are instructed to apply on cleansed skin overnight and just let its work its magic. The little patches absorb any excess fluid there might be in the pore as well as any other badness that may be lurking around in there. It then creates a moist (gross I know..) environment to reduce the risk of scarring and scabs occurring. They claim to help spots heal 50% faster. 

So fast foward a week, how have I found them? I have had this whopper of a spot on my chin for the past couple of weeks. Nothing I have used worked on it, not even my beloved Origins Super Spot Remover was up for the challenge. So its safe to say I definitely put these to the test. I used them two nights and one day in a row and at the end of it the redness was dramatically reduced and the swelling was definitely taken down. I didn't have any pain with it but I will report back once I try it on one of those craters that will no doubt appear in about a weeks time! In my opinion these definitely do help. As with any spot treatment do not expect your skin to be perfect the next day but do expect it to be dramatically reduced in size! 

If you want to give these a go you can order them online here with free worldwide shipping!